Apple engineer accused of attempting to leak confidential information to China

Gladys Abbott
February 2, 2019

WE'D BLOW A GASKET if details surrounding our INQmobile were nicked, so we can understand why a Chinese Apple staffer has been charged with stealing secrets related to Cupertino's self-driving auto project.

Jizhong Chen allegedly took photographs of machinery in Apple facilities, despite recently signing an oath of strict confidentiality when he joined the company's autonomous Vehicle project.

After further investigation, it was discovered that Chen had recently applied for a job at one of Apple's competitors in China, who also engineered autonomous vehicles.

For those who came in late, Apple's project Titan has never got off the ground because Jobs' Mob's business model of having auto companies give Apple all their profits did not attract any interest.

Chen's personal cellphone was found to contain about 100 photographs taken within the project's building. A Chinese engineer has reportedly been arrested for stealing details of Apple's secret self-driving vehicle project.

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When Apple's Global Product Security team searched the employee's computer, they found "thousands" of sensitive Apple files, such as schematics, manuals, pictures, and diagrams. According to CNBC, Chen told Apple he started backing up his work files on his personal computer as an "insurance policy", after he had been placed on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) in December 2018. The engineer later told Apple he meant to travel to China to visit his ill father, but was arrested last week before he could board his direct flight.

Apple said in a statement that it took the protection of its technology "very seriously" and was cooperating with law enforcement, although it pointed all questions to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

If found guilty, Chen faces 10 years imprisonment and up to $250,000 in fines. Back in July, another ex-Apple engineer, Zhang Xiaolang, was charged with trying to pass the Apple Car secrets to a startup in China.

The accused is Jizhong Chen, a native of China.

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